All I can think of at this very moment is, “How on Earth did my mother do it?” How did she make sending me off into the world look so easy? Today, in this moment, I have no idea how she didn’t hold on tight and never let go.
Last week during the “Meet & Greet” for my daughter’s VPK class I could hear the school director and the chatter that surrounded me. However, I sat there in that tiny chair and allowed the tears to well up in my eyes. I blinked and elementary school, middle school, and high school had passed me by. I’m almost certain that that is exactly how these next 13 years will go; I am sure of it.
I left the meeting last Wednesday holding my little lady in my arms and my heart in my hands. Did I bawl on the drive home? Maybe.
Fast forward to the night before her first day of VPK; I was pleasantly surprised with myself. The sadness that had overcome me that day had somewhat washed away. She was ready. I was ready. We were ready. At least I thought so.
The morning of the first day of VPK went as smoothly as a mother could hope. There isn’t much difference in our routine (She’s been going to “school” since she was four months old). Yet, even though there was so much familiarity, there was so much change.
My little lady would have a new teacher and new friends. And, most emotional, for me, is that this will be the last year she will spend in the only school she’s ever known. Pass me the tissues.
On the drive to work that morning I had an epiphany. Yes, the years zoom by faster than I would like. Yes, there are moments where I find myself feeling a little blue for how quickly she is growing. But, that is not what I am afraid of.
In the moment that my little lady hugged me once last time before she took her seat, my eyes filled with tears. I feel privileged to witness such an incredible being grow up. However, I am scared to release her to the world.
I understand it now. The sadness my mother felt for when I “grew” up and left–I get it. For the tears she shed when I finally left our house–I get it. My mother was scared for the unknown and for what the world would do to me. But, if she can do it, so can I.
To the mom crying at the drop-off line–I see you. To the mom that sat outside the preschool door–I feel you. To the mom that called the school’s director to check on their child–I was you. To the mom that knows she is going to shed some tears at every change of teacher and school–I am you.